Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

Piano Sonata No. 18 in D major ("Trumpet", "Hunt"), K. 576

    Description by James Manheim

    Pity the pianist who relies on Mozart's designation of K. 576 as a "leichte Klaviersonate" -- an easy piano sonata. The work was written in 1789, shortly after the composer's return from a largely unsuccessful concert tour of Potsdam, Leipzig, and finally, Berlin, where the sonata may have been aimed at a princess at the Prussian court. Little came of Mozart's journey in the way of fresh commissions, and small wonder: some have suggested that this D major sonata is actually the most difficult of the composer's 18 in technical terms. The technical problems come not in the sprightly thematic material, but in its thoroughly contrapuntal treatment, perhaps inspired by Mozart's visit to Leipzig and his reacquaintance with the dormant but still enormously influential masterpieces of J.S. Bach. The sonata has three movements in the usual fast-slow-fast configuration. The first movement, an Allegro in a jaunty 6/8 time, abounds with imitative entrances that, taken individually, might have come from Bach inventions, but they resolve themselves into chordally accompanied scale material; the music never loses its graceful, Classical flow. This sonata, owing to its horn-call opening, has sometimes been given the nicknames of "Trumpet" or "Hunt," and the work's basic intellectual attraction is established at the outset when this stereotypical figure is unexpectedly subjected to imitation. The second subject area of the exposition is extracted from the opening material in a way Haydn would have been proud of, and the development section is an especially dense contrapuntal essay. The Adagio middle movement, in A major, is a limpid melody gently darkened by chromatic runs, and the Allegretto finale, nearly as contrapuntal as the first movement, sandwiches forte, chromatic, and virtuosic treatments of its main material between the seemingly meek statements of that material that mark off the movement's basic divisions. This was Mozart's last piano sonata, and it perennially appeals both to pianists seeking a Mozartean challenge and to those interested in the point of counterpoint in Mozart's late works.

    Parts/Movements

    1. Allegro
    2. Adagio
    3. Allegretto

    Appears On

    Year Title / Performer Label / Catalog # AllMusic Rating
    2018
    Steinway & Sons
    STNS 30068
    2018
    Profil - Edition Günter Hänssler
    PH 18026
    2018
    ArcoDiva
    UP 0205
    2018
    Profil - Edition Günter Hänssler
    PH 18050
    2018
    Oehms Classics
    OC 017
    2017
    Decca / Eloquence
    ELQ 4826291
    2016
    Decca
    4824476
    2016
    Sony Classical
    88843071652
    2016
    Deutsche Grammophon
    2016
    Deutsche Grammophon
    4795978
    2016
    Warner Classics
    0825646942060
    2016
    Harmonia Mundi
    HMU 90753233
    2015
    Sony Classical
    88875032222
    2015
    Audite
    AUDITE 95720
    2015
    Sony Classical
    88875051802
    2015
    Hyperion
    CDA 68029
    2015
    La Dolce Volta
    LDV 19
    2015
    Wigmore Hall Live
    WHLCD 0078
    2015
    eOne
    EOMCD 7758
    2015
    Deutsche Grammophon
    4822418
    2014
    Deutsche Grammophon
    2014
    Albany Music Distribution
    TROY 1492
    2014
    Doremi Records
    DHR 8024
    2014
    Gramola
    98990
    2014
    Deutsche Grammophon
    4793622
    2014
    Deutsche Grammophon
    2014
    Erato
    2564624223
    2014
    APR (Appian)
    APR 7305
    2013
    Music & Arts
    CD 1274
    2013
    Honens
    200603CD
    2013
    Accent
    ACC 24254
    2013
    APR (Appian)
    6013
    2013
    Decca
    4785093
    2012
    CAG
    5638090314
    2012
    Sony Classical
    88725413592
    2012
    MDG / Zebralution
    2012
    Regis / Regis Records
    1382
    2012
    Anima Records
    9040001
    2011
    Fazer / Finlandia
    2011
    Brilliant Classics
    94198
    2011
    Avie
    2209
    2011
    Decca
    2011
    Mirare
    MIR 152
    2011
    Documents / Membran
    233082
    2010
    VAI Audio
    VAIA 1272
    2010
    Linn Records
    352
    2010
    Brilliant Classics
    94034
    2010
    Digital
    2009
    Document / Membran
    224063
    2009
    Doremi Records
    7961
    2009
    Accent
    24190
    2009
    Fab Four
    232849
    2008
    Music & Arts
    1008
    2008
    EMI Classics / Warner Classics
    5099920610
    2008
    EMI Classics
    229232
    2008
    Erato
    4696943
    2008
    Eroica Classical Recordings
    3404
    2008
    EMI Classics
    367524
    2008
    Brilliant Classics
    92733
    2008
    Fuga Libera
    538
    2008
    Altara Music
    1026
    2008
    Deutsche Grammophon
    4776656
    2008
    Philips
    4646602
    2007
    Vai
    4433
    2007
    Doremi Records
    71149
    2007
    Passacaille
    PAS 941
    2007
    Musical Concepts
    141
    2007
    Doremi Records
    7901
    2007
    Regis Records
    1254
    2007
    EMI Classics
    87894
    2007
    Universal Classics & Jazz
    2007
    Philips
    4758510
    2007
    Deutsche Grammophon
    4777152 GM 2
    2006
    Warner Classics
    2006
    Fazer / Finlandia
    2006
    Brilliant
    93025
    2006
    BIS
    1633
    2006
    Deutsche Grammophon
    2006
    Deutsche Grammophon
    002894775200
    2006
    Berlin Classics
    0013682
    2006
    ATMA Classique
    22249
    2006
    Various Artists
    Philips
    2006
    Deutsche Grammophon
    2006
    Music & Arts
    CD-1001
    2006
    Avie
    2105
    2006
    Sony Music Distribution
    88808
    2006
    Universal Classics & Jazz
    2006
    Philips
    2006
    Oehms
    563
    2006
    Various Artists
    Simply
    024
    2006
    Deutsche Grammophon
    000764972
    2006
    Deutsche Grammophon
    000731602
    2006
    Dal Segno
    011
    2006
    Dal Segno
    029
    2005
    Nonesuch
    2005
    Warner Classics
    4623362
    2005
    MDG
    3411302
    2005
    Connoisseur Society
    4254
    2005
    Archipel
    0226
    2005
    Brilliant
    92268
    2005
    Philips
    000395702
    2005
    Naïve
    8905
    2005
    Archipel
    0220
    2005
    Arbiter
    ARBITER144
    2005
    Brilliant
    92540
    2004
    Columns
    99709
    2004
    Various Artists
    Brilliant
    92388
    2003
    Avie
    0025
    2003
    Gramola
    GRAM 98701/5
    2003
    Sony Music Distribution
    8799
    2003
    RCA
    55705
    2003
    Decca
    000018002
    2003
    dB Productions
    77
    2002
    Astree
    8869
    2001
    Testament
    1221
    2001
    Musicians Showcase
    1044
    2000
    Music & Arts
    1060
    2000
    Music & Arts
    CD1060
    2000
    Arbiter
    122
    2000
    Vox
    5516
    2000
    Simax
    1149
    2000
    Various Artists
    Philips
    000575602
    2000
    Naxos
    110603
    2000
    BIS
    835/37
    2000
    EMI Music Distribution / Warner Classics
    7243573915
    1999
    Philips
    456886
    1999
    Philips
    456925
    1999
    Philips
    462232
    1999
    Philips
    454987
    1999
    Philips
    456823
    1999
    EMI Music Distribution
    72823
    1999
    Philips
    456982
    1999
    Pearl
    9236
    1999
    Deutsche Grammophon
    463137
    1999
    Decca / Deutsche Grammophon
    1999
    Hungaroton
    31804/6
    1999
    Danacord
    481-482
    1998
    Sony Music Distribution
    62879
    1997
    Protone Records
    2206
    1997
    Nimbus
    1775
    1997
    Philips
    456132
    1997
    Sony Music Distribution
    63290
    1997
    Pearl
    9286
    1996
    Arbiter
    ARBITER104
    1995
    Philips
    446238
    1995
    Sony Classical
    52627
    1995
    London
    443717
    1995
    Melodiya
    25175
    1995
    Philips
    446 222-2PB25
    1994
    Pearl
    9108
    1994
    Naxos
    505012
    1994
    Naxos
    550448
    1993
    Bridge
    9011
    1993
    Denon Records
    8075
    1993
    Olympia (Classical/Jazz)
    234
    1992
    London
    436383
    1992
    Nonesuch
    79202
    1992
    Deutsche Grammophon
    435882
    1992
    Deutsche Grammophon
    1992
    Vox
    5046
    1992
    Erato
    45510
    1991
    EMI Music Distribution
    63688
    1991
    Deutsche Grammophon
    431 760-2GH6
    1991
    Deutsche Grammophon / Universal Music Classics and Jazz
    1991
    Philips
    422719
    1991
    EMI Music Distribution
    67294
    1991
    Astree
    8685
    1991
    Philips
    000121802
    1991
    Sony Music Distribution
    45613
    1990
    Deutsche Grammophon
    431 084-2GH
    1990
    Hungaroton
    31011
    1989
    Hungaroton
    31009/14
    1986
    Philips
    412617
    Labor Records
    RCA
    60867
    Fone
    08
    Biddulph Recordings
    013
    Discurios
    6w
    16
    Amado Classics
    01031
    Kontrapunkt
    32092
    Brilliant
    92630
    Philips
    4756199
    Philips
    411136
    The Piano Library
    275
    Brilliant
    92630/5
    Brilliant
    92268/5
    Brilliant Classics
    93669/18
    Brilliant
    92388/18
    Discover
    920198
    Digital Masterworks
    71826
    Accent
    8853
    Pro-Arte Records
    247
    Powder
    5139
    Musical Heritage Society
    566052
    Pro-Arte Records
    Sony Music Distribution
    47222
    Teldec
    9031724832
    Teldec
    242741
    Various Artists
    All Russia
    Denon Records
    73087
    Edition HERA
    2200
    Jana Ting
    Melodiya
    25172